Update from the Executive Director

This week our Next Step Ministry interns left for Haiti. They will embark on a 10-week journey, living in Fond Blanc with the children and leading over 220 people traveling to Haiti to serve.   This is always an exciting time for us, as we know how excited the children are to reunite with old friends and make many new friends.

 

These summer mission trips serve as a valuable asset to the Fond Blanc Foundation, as we are able to work on projects that have been part of our long-term goals. In addition, the children love having their friends around ~ they get to participate in VBS, they work on their English, they learn about the world outside of Fond Blanc and they feel God’s undying love that comes from their visiting friends.

 

This summer our main projects are pretty special. We will finish up the library and bathrooms for the children and we will finally get a chance to work outside of the walls in the village of Fond Blanc, helping to build a permanent market place, with a concrete floor and a roof. This is something we have discussed for many years, as currently they are unable to hold market during the rainy season. We are feeling blessed that after many years of serving at the orphanage in Fond Blanc, we are able to finally do something special and needed for the community of Fond Blanc!

 

The library and bathrooms have also been on our long-term list, as currently the children do not have bathrooms upstairs near their bedrooms.   This tends to be tricky for a late night bathroom visit without electricity for lights!

Great progress last summer on our rec/library space!

The library has been on our wish list forever; as now we will be able to have a permanent place for the sewing machines, have tables where the kids can study and storage for school supplies, books and movies. One day we even hope to allow the kids an opportunity to have computers for exploring the world around them. This project goes hand in hand with our school, as the children advance in grade level and homework becomes more important.

 

In this newsletter you will also meet two very important people. For those of you that have been to Fond Blanc, you will likely remember Swenson, one of our translators who has been with us since the beginning. This past school year, he took on the job of teaching English (to the children and the adults!) and has done a fantastic job of it. Swenson is an incredibly valuable part of this ministry and someone whom lots of us consider family. I’m excited for you all to hear from him about his new role in Fond Blanc.

You will also hear from Next Step Ministries’ new Haiti Team Leader, Lucas Veran. Lucas has been to Haiti many times and this will be his second time serving as a Next Step Ministry intern in Haiti. I am positive he is going to do a terrific job this summer and all whom visit will see his love and passion for the people of Haiti.

Swenson (center) & Lucas (2nd from left)

Finally, for those of you who have the opportunity to travel to Fond Blanc, you will see the remarkable transformation of the sustainability area behind the orphanage. This is a project that we have been working on for many years through the help and assistants of our good friends with the Phi Gamma Delta (FIJI) Fraternity at UW-Madison.   They have helped us raise the funds necessary to start and maintain a sustainable chicken operation, as well as a productive and abundant gardening area. This has been an amazing addition to Fond Blanc, as we now have fresh eggs, fruits, vegetables and will soon have chickens that we raise ourselves to add to their diets. To the gentleman of the FIJI House, we thank you for your tireless effort to help change the lives of these deserving people.   Thank you!!

 

Our new chicks & improvements to sustainability areas

Our love and gratitude to each of you for your impact on this ministry ~ you make all the difference J.

Xo Tia

 

 

 

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